LOS ANGELES – A Hollywood talent manager was convicted and ordered to pay restitution for conducting a $3,000 bait-and-switch scam on aspiring actors and their parents. Deputy City Attorney Mark Lambert successfully prosecuted the case.
Defendant Patrick W. O’Brien, 51, operator of Pat O’ Brien Talent Management and Talent Marketing and Promotions, Inc., entered a no contest plea to one count of operating an advance-fee talent representation service and failing to file a $50,000 bond with the State Labor Commission.
Judge Yolanda Orozco sentenced defendant O’Brien three years probation and 90 days jail or perform 45 days of community labor. Defendant O’Brien was ordered to pay $6,000 in restitution to three victims and to shut down his business “Talent Marketing and Promotions, Inc.”
Defendant O’Brien was ordered not to advertise any audition or employment opportunity and to have no involvement with any talent training service or talent listing service anywhere inside or outside the State of California, including any seminar, camp, educational facility. Also, Defendant O’Brien was ordered not to be involved in any business that develops or produces motion pictures, television, the Internet or any other entertainment enterprise.
In April 2010, an Arizona mother replied to a casting notice for a teen sitcom project. In an email reply, the woman’s 15 year-old son was invited to audition at the Hollywood Center Studios lot in Los Angeles, and subsequently before O’Brien. During a second interview, O’Brien signed the son to a management contract. O’Brien also sold the victim a “photo shoot and acting classes” package for nearly $3,000.
The victim’s family relocated to California so that the son could participate in the photo shoot and acting classes. A full refund was requested by the victims but never provided.
The victims reported O’Brien’s questionable business practices to the City Attorney’s Office for investigation. After the case was filed, two more parents contacted the City Attorney’s office and filed a complaint against O’Brien and his business.
The prosecution of O’Brien was the second successful prosecution of a talent manager by the City Attorney’s office in the past week pursuant to the 2009 Krekorian Talent Scam Prevention Act that went into effect January 1, 2010 and was sponsored by the City Attorney. Last week, talent manager Nick Roses was convicted of similar charges.